Enneagram Type 2: The Helper


If you have never heard about the Enneagram or any of the nine personality traits that make it up, you’re in for an adventure.

The idea for the Enneagram was created in 1915 by a philosopher named George Gurdjieff. In the 1960s, the nine personality types were organized into the current Enneagram, with each personality assigned a specific point on the diagram, establishing the flow between numbers.

You might be wondering how everyone in the entire world can fit into one of only nine types; you might be surprised. These personality types are not cut-and-dry, black and white. There are levels of unhealthy and healthy Enneagram types that will show different personality traits even from the other people with whom they share a number.

Now it’s time to get to the point of all of this: Enneagram 2, the Helper.

When first approaching the Enneagram, more often than not, people who see the characteristics associated with Enneagram 2 either want to be or date a 2.

There is no “best” Enneagram number, and everyone has their flaws, but at first glance, Enneagram 2 seems like the ideal partner and best friend.

Also known as the Helper, Two is the empath of the Enneagram. You’ll know someone is an Enneagram 2 if you mention needing or struggling with something, and the next day, the very thing you need is delivered straight to your door.

Twos are the moms and dads of the friend group. You can tell them your problems, and they will do everything in their power to ease your burdens, even if that means having to sacrifice something of themselves to do it.

But are Enneagram 2’s actually the teddy bears of the Enneagram, or is there more to them? Not shockingly, Two has much more depth to them than most people could know.

The Helper Overview

Enneagram 2’s often get their joy and pleasure from serving other people. They also often find their identity in their work and what they can do for others, so make sure that if you’re close to or in a relationship with an Enneagram 2, you’re affirming, appreciating, and loving them.

As children, people who end up identifying the most with the Enneagram type 2 usually had to take on the protector’s burden in their home. Whether that meant looking after their sisters while their parents were away or that child Two had to look after themselves.

Unlike the Enneagram 8, who has a similar childhood wound trigging the max protector and warrior mode, the Two becomes the nurturing and maternal character they needed.

Adult Twos have a hard time knowing what they want or how to be ‘selfish.’ Instead, they’ll look at their partners and ask them what they want.

The Helper - Enneagram

Biggest Fear

Enneagram 2’s biggest fear is that they will wind up being unwanted, unneeded, and unworthy of love. This is why they are constantly bending over backward to do things for the people they love. They were also never taught that you shouldn’t have to do anything to receive love, so that logic doesn’t always compute in their brains.

All Enneagram 2’s wants out of life is to be loved. The painful irony is that most Enneagram 2’s will never know how to fully receive love from others until they’re the healthiest version of themselves.

Enneagram 2 in Stress

When Enneagram 2 is stressed out and at its unhealthiest, they take on the traits of an Enneagram Eight. This often means the 2 will be aggressive and upset, usually throwing things back into the face of their partners, reliving every example of times they’ve sacrificed for their partner without reciprocation.

This is because Twos are uncomfortable expressing their own needs. When their emotions finally come to a boiling point and bubble over, an unhealthy Two doesn’t know how to communicate their feelings and desires, so they just become resentful.

At their worst, Twos can be manipulative and selfish. They can go so far as confronting friends and partners they’ve done things for to demand favors, repayment, or retribution. This is because they’re no longer repressing any feelings they’ve attempted to hide for years.

Enneagram 2 in Growth

On the opposite side of the spectrum, when Enneagram 2 is at its healthiest, they will adopt the best traits associated with Enneagram 4.

Because Four is self-aware and often cares about themselves before others, the Two will usually rectify their feelings and feel as though they have a safe space where they can share their wants and desires.

During their growth periods, Twos can feel more self-nurturing and emotionally intelligent. There is nothing wrong with finding pleasure in serving others. But it can get a bit dicey when Two equates their self-worth to how much they are able to give love. That’s something they can work out when they’re in an open and growth-oriented relationship.

Enneagram 2 with Wing-1

Enneagram 2-wing-1’s are referred to as the companions or the servants on the Enneagram.

2-wing-1’s are focused on their endeavors to love and frequently make the most significant altruistic impact on everyone around them. This combination is more introverted and quiet, leaning into the gentle nature associated with Twos.

Twos with an Enneagram 1 wing are community-oriented and known for serving their community and bettering the lives of those around them. They are passionate and driven, spurred on by the One’s goal-oriented characteristics.

Because the Two-wing-One is so devoted to their causes and focused on being the best that they can be, these combos can spot others’ needs from a mile away and know exactly how to make things right. Healthy Two-wing-Ones are also very aware of where they need to improve.

The Two-wing-One also takes on some of the burdens of a One and can be highly critical and insecure when weak.

Enneagram 2 with Wing-3

Enneagram 2-wing-3’s are the hosts and hostesses of the Enneagram.

Where the Two-wing-One has strict attention to detail, the Two-wing-Three is more performative in its actions and how they demonstrate love and affection.

Both wings are dedicated to loving others and terrified of not receiving the same love they give. However, they express and avoid those fears in semi-oppositional ways.

The Two-wing-Three’s primary fear is being unwanted or feeling worthless, which is the perfect blend of the Two and the Three’s fears. To prevent this from coming true, the Two-wing-Three will try to network and become an integral part of the community, so they will always be needed. All to feel valued.

The Two-wing-Three is the best kind of person to be around when you want to have a deeply intellectual conversation. The traits they take from Enneagram Three make it possible to make deep connections with any and everyone they meet.

Two-wing-Threes might struggle with their competitive nature and feel as though they’re the only ones who can adequately love or serve their community. Because of their passions and desires, they will only acknowledge their own needs once a project is complete, leaving them emotionally drained by the end of their endeavors.

How the Enneagram 2’s Characteristics Apply to Romance and Dating

What we said earlier is very accurate; everyone ought to be in a relationship with Enneagram 2. It is an honor and a privilege to be loved by a Two; they will love you better than almost anyone else in your life.

That being said, it’s not all chocolate and roses once you get into a relationship with a Two. No one is perfect, and the skeletons in people’s closets often have a nasty habit of coming out eventually.

A Two will give their partner everything in a relationship, and we mean everything. For most Twos, being in a relationship and feeling loved is their life’s goal. Once those goals are achieved, they will spend all their energy and effort trying to make their partner feel loved.

Even though Twos want to love big and love unconditionally, their tendency to give all of themselves up in order to show that love often leans toward the unhealthy side and might be detrimental to their well-being. They burn themselves out on love more than any other personality type.

If you’re in a relationship with a Two, you’ve probably noticed their tendency to avoid acknowledging what they want or what’s bothering them until it all bubbles over and explodes in desperation, fear, and panic.

The Helper wants to receive as much love as they give, even if they make it all but impossible to show it to them.

Tips for Keeping The Enneagram 2’s Interested

Tell Them How Grateful You Are for Them

When you’re in a relationship with Enneagram 2, you’ll become immune or almost blind to how loving and kind they are toward you. As a result, you might not always express the full extent of your gratitude.

While we don’t expect you to worship the ground they stand on, and relationships are all about being equals, do try to infuse gratitude into your everyday communication with your Enneagram 2 partner.

Helpers struggle with criticism and can’t help taking things to heart. Words have a lot of power over Twos and their perceptions. You’ll want to ensure you’re building your Two up rather than tearing them down.

Invest in the Things That Bring Them Joy

When Two is at its healthiest, you will notice they are drawn to particular hobbies and fixations that bring them joy. They do these things when no one needs anything from them, typically when no one is watching.

If you notice your partner has little time to do or pay attention to their favorite hobby, plan a date night centered around that activity. However, note that if your Enneagram 2 partner thinks you’re not enjoying your time out or it seems like you’re just doing it to appease them, they’ll become withdrawn and unhappy.

Instead, love spending time doing what your partner enjoys and see their faces light up in love.

Do Self-Care Together

Along those lines, it might be good for you both to add some self-care into the mix.

Have a night devoted to serving them and doing what they want. If you notice they haven’t spent much time caring for themselves and are running themselves ragged, ask to spend a night just being there for their needs.

Take them to get a massage, ask them if there’s anything you could take off their plate, and just love them. That’s all they really want.

Things to Consider When Dating an Enneagram 2

While it might feel good to be served and loved, remember that your Two is treasuring you because they have a preconceived notion about love.

It’s good to remind your Two that love is not something that can be earned but is given freely. Because this statement is the opposite of what Twos were taught and how they live, it might be hard to work that truth out together and explore what that means.

Another thing partners of Enneagram 2’s should know is that they can develop a bad habit of equating their worth to the relationship.

Do you know those people who are overly proud of their relationships and partners? So much so that, when introduced, they often don’t talk about themselves or even say their names. They’ll say something like, “Hi, I’m Andrew’s fianceé” or, “I’m Susan’s husband.

It might be nothing, and they are just giving the other party some context clues for who they are. But it could also be a sign of your Two losing their individual identity.

The Enneagram 2’s Compatibility with Other Enneagram Types

Most Compatible

Although the Enneagram is not meant to be used to be exclusionary by any sense of the word, and all of the types can be together and work, some Enneagram numbers are more naturally harmonious than others. These personality types are most compatible with the Helper.

Enneagram 3 – The Achiever

The Achiever - Enneagram

Enneagram Threes and Twos work very well together in relationships. The Two offers the love and assurance the Three craves, and the Three spurs on the Two, making them feel like they can achieve anything.

While you might not know it at first glance, both types are very similar. Both need attention, words of affirmation, and love to feel worthy of love. This core desire drives them to provide the same in relationships.

Potential problems between Twos and Threes come from Three’s ability to completely separate themselves from their feelings in order to get a task done. In contrast, Twos cannot be separated from their emotions. In those situations, these personalities will clash and be unable to see eye-to-eye with one another.

Enneagram 8 – The Challenger

The Challenger - Enneagram

Two and Eight can learn a lot from each other. They’re both passionate, goal-oriented, and emotionally deep.

The two personality types share similar childhood wounds; they just choose opposing paths to get out of those situations. Because of the main similarities, however, the Eight and the Two can connect with one another on a profound spiritual level that most types cannot reach.

It’s important to note that both the Eight and the Two will do anything and everything to ensure their partners are okay, even if that means putting themselves in danger. Both Enneagram types are extraordinarily passionate.

Eights need someone as kind and compassionate as a Two on their side, and a Two needs a strong, capable Eight to help them fight some battles.

Together, this pairing makes one of the strongest, most love-oriented couples on the Enneagram.

Least Compatible

We’ve been singing the Two’s praises so far, but some types might clash with the Two’s lifestyle and how they approach the world.

Enneagram 4 – The Individualist

The Individualist - Enneagram

Although the Two will grow to a Four when they’re at their healthiest, these two types are not necessarily the best in a relationship.

The Two and the Four are some of the most emotional and dependent types on the Enneagram. Because of that, their relationship will often lack emotional maturity and regulation.

These two types will cry together and commiserate, but it might be hard to pull them out of a depression. Because of this, Twos and Fours work better as friends than romantic partners.

Enneagram 5 – The Investigator

The Investigator - Enneagram

Enneagram Fives and Twos are complete opposites. The Two wants to spend their time and energy loving others, even if that means they lose out on opportunities to be alone and recharge their soles.

That’s Enneagram Five’s worst nightmare, as they must withdraw from the world and get away from people to actually hear their own thoughts.

At their best, Fives can bring focus to the Two’s world and allow the Two to realize that they don’t always have to disrespect their own boundaries to serve those around them. Likewise, Twos can pull Fives away from themselves and their mind palaces and get them to connect with others who share their interests.

That being said, boundaries and respect are huge disconnects between these two types. The Two usually has no boundaries, and the Five has too many. As this is how both types interact with the world, this is a massive point of contention for them.

Enneagram 6 – The Loyalist

The Loyalist - Enneagram 1

On paper, the pairing between a Two and Six promises to create an intense and meaningful connection. Sixes are loyal to their core and will do anything to protect the people they love. Twos are dedicated and steadfast and will cross all kinds of borders to show those around them how much they are loved.

The problem comes when either of the types starts to show unhealthy signs. At their core, Sixes, and Twos are deeply unstable and unsure about themselves.

Sixes are governed in ways that make them see the worst-case scenario in every situation. Because of this, they will try to protect themselves. But the Two, who is never in self-preservation mode, might see the Six’s reaction as selfish.

Alternatively, when a Two is at their worst and becomes demanding and cruel, the Six might feel as though the carpet has been ripped out from under them, and they are no longer in a stable relationship. When you break the trust of a Six, it’s almost impossible to win it back.

Final Thoughts about Dating an Enneagram 2

Being in a relationship with someone who identifies as an Enneagram 2 is one of the biggest blessings that anyone will ever be able to receive in their lives.

If you are hurting, Enneagram 2 will go out of their way to make sure that you never feel pain again. If you want something, an Enneagram 2 will deliver 50 of whatever you’ve been eying within a matter of minutes.

If you need someone who will listen to you, cry with you, and help you out of the emotional hole you might have dug for yourself, Enneagram 2 will show up with tissues and a shovel.

So don’t make the mistake of dismissing Twos as pushovers, hippies, or softies; these are some of the most passionate and dedicated people you will ever meet.